Illinois farmers concerned weather could delay planting

SBG file photo

CLINTON, Ill. (AP) -- Illinois farmers are getting nervous that the long, cold and wet spring will delay the planting season.

Thomas Wargel is an accredited farm manager and the owner of Black Prairie Ag Services Inc. in Clinton. He tells The Pantagraph that the target planting date is typically around April 21.

The cold and wet weather means farmers will face low soil temperatures and saturated fields. Wargel says farmers don't want to start planting if soil temperatures can't sustain growth.

Central Illinois saw temperatures of about 75 degrees Fahrenheit (24 Celsius) Thursday, the first time since October that temperatures were warmer than 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 Celsius).

National Weather Service meteorologist Eric Laufenberg says cooler weather will return and that parts of Illinois may see rain and snow over the weekend.

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